Nassau County Legislator Kevan Abrahams has responded to notifications of blood shortages by the New York Blood Center in the form of a public letter, which reads:
In recent weeks, the Delta variant of the coronavirus has impacted many aspects of our society -- and our regional blood supply has been especially hard hit by the presence of a variant that spreads quickly and seems to affect our youth more than other variants.
According to the New York Blood Center, the stockpile of available blood has decreased from five days to a two- to three-day supply. Type O blood, which has dwindled to a one- to two-day stock, is especially scarce. Faced with these conditions, NYBC recently declared a blood emergency to address this critical need -- one that is expected to persist amidst the postponement of many planned school, office, and community blood drives this fall.
We are all committed to ensuring everyone who needs blood will be able to receive life-saving transfusions in their moment of need. If we step up now, we can do our part to replenish and maintain our regional blood supply.
Donating blood is a safe and carefully monitored activity, and NYBC’s staff are closely following strict precautions to protect staff and donors from COVID-19. In compliance with COVID-19 prevention directives, donors must wear a face mask or covering; have their temperature taken before donating; and must be 14 days symptom-free if they have recovered from COVID-19. Individuals that are currently observing self-quarantine restrictions, tested positive, or experienced symptoms in the last 14 days are not eligible to donate at this time.
As always, eligible donors must have an ID with a signature or a photo, weigh at least 110 pounds, have had no tattoos in the last 12 months and be ages 16-75 years of age (16-year-old donors must have parental consent. Donors over age 76 must bring a doctor’s note).
At a time when the need is so great, I encourage everyone who is eligible to give the gift of life. Visit https://donate.nybc.org/donor/schedules/drive_schedule/281773 to schedule a time to donate, or call 1-800-933-BLOOD (25663).”
KEVAN M. ABRAHAMS